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article imageNine members of National Parks board quit in protest

By Karen Graham     Jan 17, 2018 in Politics
Former Alaska Governor Tony Knowles led a mass resignation of nine members of the National Park System Advisory Board on Monday, in a protest over the Trump administration's priorities regarding the national parks system.
As reported by the Washington Post, former Alaska Governor Tony Knowles, a member of the board for the last 10 years, submitted the letter of resignation Monday to Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke. The letter was also signed by eight other members of the 12-member board.
In the letter, Knowles wrote he and the other members of the board “have stood by waiting for the chance to meet and continue the partnership . . . as prescribed by law. We understand the complexity of transition but our requests to engage have been ignored and the matters on which we wanted to brief the new Department team are clearly not part of its agenda."
Knowles wrote. “I wish the National Park System and Service well and will always be dedicated to their success.”
Knowles is concerned that the new Department of the Interior is undoing much of the progress that was made over the years with our national park system. “The department showed no interest in learning about or continuing to use the forward-thinking agenda of science, the effect of climate change, protections of the ecosystems, education,” Knowles said in a phone interview with Alaska Public Radio.
Knowles added, “And it has rescinded NPS regulations of resource stewardship concerning those very things: biodiversity loss, pollution and climate change.”
The National Parks System Advisory Board was chartered by Congress in 1935 under the Historic Sites, Buildings, and Antiquities Act. The board has been instrumental in strengthening the National Park Service through honoring the mission of stewardship, protection, and advancement of our National Parks.
However, as the Post points out, other advisory boards are also at a standstill, including two tied to the Bureau of Land Management, leaving a number of what had been ongoing projects languishing and gathering dust on a shelf.
More about Resignations, Trump administration, Ryan Zinke, Politics, National parks
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